Surgery for bone cancer

Surgery is one of the main treatments for primary bone cancer. It is a very specialised treatment. You have your operation at a specialist centre.

This section is about cancer that starts in your bone (primary bone cancer). If your cancer has spread into bone from another part of the body, it is called secondary bone cancer.

Types of surgery for bone cancer

The type of surgery you might have depends on the size of your cancer and whether it has grown into nearby tissues, or has spread elsewhere in the body.

Limb sparing surgery for bone cancer

Limb sparing surgery for primary bone cancer means removing the cancer without removing the affected arm or leg.

Surgery to remove a limb (amputation)

Amputation for primary bone cancer means removing a part of the body completely.

Surgery for bone cancer that has spread

Surgery might be possible sometimes to remove primary bone cancer that has spread to the lungs (secondary cancer).

Preparing for bone cancer surgery

Before your surgery, you’ll have tests, meet the people that will care for you and learn exercises that you have to do.

Going into hospital

You’ll probably go into hospital the day before or the morning of your operation. There are things you can do to prepare yourself and to make it less stressful.

On the day

Knowing what happens on the day of surgery, including having an anaesthetic, can help you feel more prepared.

After bone cancer surgery

Knowing what to expect after surgery for primary bone cancer can be reassuring.

Last reviewed: 
16 Mar 2021
Next review due: 
15 Mar 2024
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